A trader, Ogechi Iruwane has tortured her 12-year-old niece, Mmesoma Ani by using her bare hands to pinch off her skin and inflicted injuries on her back so badly that she was admitted to the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi-Araba, Surulere.
Ani was also said to have been starved for two days for allegedly stealing a piece of meat. Other traders raised the alarm and reported the case to Lagos State Office of the Public Defender.
Officials of the agency reportedly apprehended the suspect and subsequently handed her over to the police at the Orile Iganmu division. The victim was afterwards taken to LUTH.
The trader, who discovered the incident, said Ani returned an empty bottle of soft drink to her when she saw her injuries.
A source at the OPD said, "The girl claimed she was 12 years old, even though she looked younger. She also looked malnourished. There were different scars on her back. The irony is that the suspect has three children and they look well-fed. The girl claimed that she is the 11th of 12 children. She said the woman came to take her from her parents in Enugu State in December 2015. She said she was in primary three before she was brought to Lagos, but since her arrival, she had not been going to school. She said the woman accused her of stealing a piece of meat and for about two days, she was not given food to eat."
The Director of the OPD, Mrs. Salami Olubukola, commended the trader that reported the case, urging residents of the state to always be on the watch for child abuse cases.
The Police Public Relations Officer, SP Dolapo Badmos, confirmed the incident, adding that the matter would soon be charged to court.